Ferrara to coach Italy Under-21s

Former Juventus player and coach Ciro Ferrara will be tasked with getting Italy to the Under-21 finals in 2013 after he was appointed U21 coach in succession to Pierluigi Casiraghi.

Ciro Ferrara has taken the reins of Italy's Under-21 side
Ciro Ferrara has taken the reins of Italy's Under-21 side ©Getty Images

The Italian Football Federation (FIGC) has named Ciro Ferrara as the new coach of Italy's Under-21 team.

The 43-year-old former Juventus player and coach will be in charge initially until 2013, replacing Pierluigi Casiraghi who resigned after Italy failed to qualify for this summer's 2011 UEFA European U21 Championship in Denmark.

Ferrara, whose experience as a head coach came with Juventus between May 2009 and January 2010, will be assisted by his former Bianconeri team-mate Angelo Peruzzi. The pair's appointment was confirmed by FIGC president Giancarlo Abete on the federation website today, and they will be officially unveiled at a news conference on Monday.

As a player, Ferrara won Serie A championships with SSC Napoli and Juventus and was capped 49 times by Italy. Pierluigi Casiraghi's four years at the helm of the Azzurrini came to an end with the team's defeat by Belarus – 3-2 on aggregate – in their qualifying play-off earlier this month.

The next cycle of U21 championship qualifiers begins this coming March, with the goal being a place in the final tournament in summer 2013.